ESD 112 Teaching & Learning leaders come together to connect and collaborate

Teaching and Learning leaders working together on a STEM challenge.
Front: Teaching and Learning Assistant Superintendent Mike Nerland. Back (L-R): Executive Directors Kathy Whitlock, Jodi Wall and Mary Mertz

Front: Teaching and Learning Assistant Superintendent Mike Nerland.
Back (L-R): Executive Directors Kathy Whitlock, Jodi Wall and Mary Mertz

In August ESD 112’s Teaching & Learning division held a Leadership Retreat to bring departments together for team building and discussion of the goals and challenges facing the division in the 2016-17 school year. With several new directors and programs going in to the school year, the retreat was a good way for the division’s leaders to connect.

Former Camas School District Superintendent Mike Nerland is the new Assistant Superintendent for Teaching and Learning. Three executive directors will report directly to Mike – Jodi Wall, Executive Director of Early Care and Education; Kathy Whitlock, Executive Director for Student and School Success; and Mary Mertz, Executive Director of Special Services.

Mary, Jodi, and Kathy, planned the retreat with six identified outcomes:

  • Connect and Collaborate with Colleagues
  • Build Community Across the Three Departments
  • Identify how the Division of Teaching and Learning currently supports the ESD 112 Mission
  • Explore how we can expand our reach in support of ESD 112’s Mission and Goals
  • Identify core values and how we relate and communicate as a team
  • Have a fun and productive day

One of the activities was a STEM challenge, where cross-department teams learned to problem-solve together.

Teaching and Learning department leaders working together to complete a STEM challenge.

Teaching and Learning department leaders working together to complete a STEM challenge.

“It was a great day,” said Nerland. “All of the participants were actively involved and, together, we identified several potential areas for cross-departmental collaboration which we will be exploring in greater detail.  For me, personally, it was a great opportunity to get to know the T&L Leadership Team better.  We plan to schedule a second meeting in December or January.”

Read more about Mike: http://web3.esd112.org/about/staff/nerland